Is Apologetics the Savior of the Church?

by Eric Chabot

Anyone who has been in the apologetics endeavor  knows that there is always the need to properly define apologetics to both the Believer and the non-believer. Every now and then, one objection I hear from my Christian friends is that those who are overly committed to apologetics must be somewhat weak in their faith. In other words, why should a Christian need all this reason and evidence stuff? After all, faith, not reason, is what God requires (Heb. 11:6).  And if we are growing in our relationship with God, our faith should be more real than before.

First, for those of us that are committed to teaching and learning apologetics are not opposed to faith at all. And it does not mean we are always weak in our faith. The reality is that the first reason (at least for me) that we want to do apologetics is because we want to reach the world for Christ and make disciples (Matt. 28:19). When we set out to do this, we always run into objections to the Christian faith. So I find that one of the main reasons that many Christians are apathetic to apologetics is because they aren’t  doing any evangelism/discipleship.

Second, I agree that it’s true that evidence can become an idol. The object of my faith is not reasons nor evidence. Instead, the object of my faith is God/Jesus. So while reasons and evidence support my trust in God/Jesus, it doesn’t replace it.  I know myself and many others strive for balance.

Third, I understand the appeal to the Holy Spirit as the one gives Christians an overwhelming certainty that Christianity is true. He has an entire ministry in the life of the Christian. And I am forever grateful for his work in my life. But religious experience won’t go very far once we get out into the culture. But part of his work is to help the Christian grow in their critical thinking skills. Many of us as Christians want a robust faith that integrates our entire being. In his book, The Opening of the Christian Mind: Taking Every Thought Captive to Christ, author David W. Gill makes a significant comment about this issue…

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